By Bev Cooney
In 2003 I first travelled to Peru to visit as a tourist. This is when I learned how well off we are in Australia. The poverty there is really terrible and people are begging in every town I visited. During Covid-19 it has been particularly bad.
We constantly hear how it has devastated the developed countries like the United States of America and Britain and Europe but most don’t realize that Peru was far worse, per capita, than those countries and in fact all of the rest of the world, when it came to deaths. When I read about the number of deaths and the problems that they had with and getting the vaccines out to the population on the WHO site I was devastated. In the years I have been working there with many medical teams I have gotten to know many doctors and nursed from the cities, the Amazon Jungle and the high Andes cities, and have many friends in places most people don’t get to visit.
My dearest friend is a man whom I met when I first travelled over there. He was a tour guide and worked for an Australian company called Tucan Travel.
I have been working with him ever since. His name is Rudy and I just love him to bits. He comes and works in the theatres when we travel there to look after the children of the poor. He ONLY speaks 6 languages and gives of his time to help us out in the theatres, by translating to the staff there in the hospitals. What a gem.
Rudy and I have been working together during Covid-19 to feed the people living on the streets as they are literally starving to death. So sad. What a great thing he has done in doing this. He and his mum buy all the food and prepare it and make up the meals, and that is hundreds of them, to take out to the homeless. I was able to organize many recipes for them, all of which came from websites here on feeding the homeless. I also send the money for them to buy the food and they cook it. He has a team of friends who distribute the food.
I am currently getting together a team of medicos and nurses to travel to the jungle to treat trachoma in 2022. Rudy will be there working with us yet again. What a man he is. He put together the attached video showing the work they do in the streets right now.